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WOA Rocks, cheap but did they come?

Show Profile  Rolf Posted: 19 October 2015, 3:25 PM  
I notice that WOA Rocks entry fees were super cheap. Why?

The event was run by HBOC, so its gunna be good. Duncan, Devon, Ross & Geoff did the course setting, so you know the courses will be top notch.

Yet only 200 people turned up.

So what does that mean?
The entry fee is not the deciding factor on whether people enter events??

Given the amount one pays to enter running events and adventure races etc, I think we undercharge.

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 19 October 2015, 4:10 PM  
Yes I've been reading the business pages too, they are saying inflation is too low for the good of the country.

Show Profile  sdwilson Posted: 19 October 2015, 8:08 PM  
It was a excellent event, run efficiently. From easy entry to instant results this event presented its self flawlessly.

But yet 200, Why?

The lack of turn out i believe would mostly be due logistics of getting there, accommodation and being a regional champs, meant that only the most competitive turned out to the event.

One thing that was missing were Hawkes Bay members as a standard OY series event seems to net 100~200 people

This furthers my theory that as a Champs event usual recreational members may have been also 'scared off' from the event fearing the event courses may have been to challenging. Even though casual entry was available, This is however the nature of champs events.

As for whether the entry fee is THE DECIDING factor of participation, No but its a considerable and influential factor that has seen myself not enter some events and also not return to others.

Also this champs region is 1/3 the county and it yielded over 1/3 the participant as nationals. so now my opinion is divided whether 200 is average, low or high numbers for such a event.

Show Profile  Jane H Posted: 20 October 2015, 7:52 AM  
I believe it is bad timing for such an event. Often adults enter because they are bringing their teenagers. University exams start within one week and NCEA exams start in 3 weeks.(Note: The largest competing group were in grades W/M 40 - 50, who were all the parents that travelled).
As HBOC Club Captain I did not push our juniors members to compete as I believed students needed to be at home studying this weekend focusing on their buildup to exams.
For the same reason I doubt we will big numbers coming to Nationals in 2017 if we host it at Labour weekend.

Show Profile  Dwayne Posted: 20 October 2015, 10:00 AM  
20 from AOC came and most did 10 hours of driving for 2 hours of competing. Entry fees were a tiny part of the cost for us. Well worth coming for me because I love going to an event where all I do is run in the event Champs events are a big draw because you know they will be good quality on good maps.
I think more from NWOC would have come if they didn't have such a big contingent at the Australian Champs a few weeks ago.
Can't comment on scaring off the locals, but AOC generally try to put some welcoming words for newcomers on the website for a big event. Maybe it is the pre entry that is the hurdle?

Show Profile  Greg Posted: 20 October 2015, 6:18 PM  
If students need to miss events to study then they haven't done enough work throughout the year.

Only 2 hours* of racing, still plenty of time to (not) study just like they probably were.

*According to Dwayne


Show Profile  Rolf Posted: 21 October 2015, 8:46 AM  
I was actually digging for a comment on why it was so cheap?
$30 for 3 races!!
This is way less than South Island Champs and Southern 6 day (by my quick review).

Perhaps we should charge more and pay our mappers more? That might it turn attract more people to want to do mapping?

Show Profile  hbfixtures Posted: 21 October 2015, 10:23 AM  
Low entry fees were due to there being no new maps for this competition. For this reason, we didn't see the point in hiking up the fees for an event that incurred no major costs to the club (in terms of mapping). In our opinion if a club can offer an event at a lower cost then why shouldn't it? Are we a sports club or a Business to generate profit? Orienteers generally spend enough money coming too and from the events all around the country, and surely lower costs can only encourage more people to travel around. In terms of low numbers, we knew large numbers would be a big ask, because of timing. With exams for both uni & high school students, as well as many people just back from Aus champs, plus the allure of South Island Champs in Naseby this weekend, we were always in tough competition. Also on over the weekend in Hawkes Bay was the Cycling Tour of Bay and Napier Half Marathon. The club more than covered it's expenses, and people who didn't come missed out on a great weekend.

Show Profile  PhillipH Posted: 21 October 2015, 11:10 AM  
.. and the presidents comments to maybe help fill in Rolf's hole, or dig my own.

When HBOC set out to plan this event, there were a couple of things I had on my wish list in addition to running a good event ( this later part was achieved mainly due to the tremendous amount of work Karen Beckman and her family put in to organise the event, along with our setters, Devon, Ross and Duncan )

One was to have low fees. Some other considerations to those mentioned were …
- We wanted to get good Hawkes Bay attendance by making the fees as reasonable as our normal event fees. We still didn't get HB numbers but hopefully this was due to the reasons put forward elsewhere.
- Orienteering NZ Rule 7.1 “The costs of organising an event are the responsibility of the organiser. To cover the costs of the competition(s), the organiser may charge an entry fee. This fee shall be kept as low as possible.”
- Personally, I also wanted to send a message to NZ clubs that maybe they should look at their event fees as I feel they have been getting out of hand for some events ( i.e. not following the above rule). I have no problem with the current standard of fees set for Nationals. It’s a big event with a lot of organisation and special requirements for the maps, medals, advertising etc. However some clubs seem to have picked up the same pricing structure when holding other lower level events. These used to have a lower entry prices to reflect the lower requirements and costs on the organising club. High fees are especially concerning when the event is promoted for younger orienteers. Rolf mentions that we under charge for what we provide, which I heartily agree with when you look at the fantastic events we put on and what they entail. It would cost a fortune for a commercial promoter to do what we do. However I feel there is one valuable point that needs consideration when you start comparing our events to those running and adventure races - we are putting the events on largely for ourselves and our fellow members.

Another thing we tried was Enter-On-The-Day. It seems the norm in Australia and the USA, so I wanted to try it here to see if it would help to allow those people who could not commit for one reason or another, to get to go for a run. Again the numbers were low, so I guess its up for debate if it is worth doing. It did allow a few more people to enjoy a great event at a spectacular venue on some beautiful Hawkes Bay days.


Show Profile  mcroxford Posted: 21 October 2015, 4:01 PM  
Apologies in advance for the ramblings.

I don't think the numbers were low based on previous years.

Numbers for Long Distance at each Area Association Champs for last 5 years.

Wellington Champs
2011-160 / 2012-128 / 2013-163 / 2014-281 / 2015-183
Auckland Champs
2011-189 / 2012-169 / 2013-193 / 2014-213 / 2015-468
South Island Champs
2011-99 / 2012-145 / 2013-229 / 2014-199 / 2015-201

The major influence seems to be hosting on a long weekend. Queens Birthday - Labour Weekend - Show Weekend (Canty Aniv.).

The trials for the Schools Team to Australia at Queens Birthday has had a major impact this year.

2014 was a very good year when WOA was on Qbday - AOA on L Day and SIOA on Show Weekend.

My thoughts are that:

Schools Trial should always be at Queens Birthday but must also be the relevant area champs as well - this will be a problem in 2017 when PAPO has the trial but not QBDay. PAPO already has a full couple of years with 2016 technical support to NOC for Nationals, SI Schools, SI Champs (at Labour Weekend?), Junior and D-Squad Camps and 2017 Waitangi and Schools Trials.

SI Champs if not on Qbday or Labour Day should be on Show Weekend as this is a travelling day for the biggest SI club - PAPO.

The Calendar for the next two years is mucked up a bit due to the World Masters but perhaps it can be sorted beyond that.

My last observation would be is the proposed change to the ONZ constituion the end of CDOA?

The main relic of CDOA is 4 yearly NZSSC, 5 yearly NISSC and 10 Yearly? NZC. Perhaps these clubs should join AOA and their event allocations given to this association?



Show Profile  jeffg Posted: 21 October 2015, 7:13 PM  
"Schools Trial should always be at Queens Birthday but must also be the relevant area champs as well - this will be a problem in 2017 when PAPO has the trial but not QBDay."

PAPO are down on the 2017 ONZ calendar for Schools Trial held in June. Is that a different weekend than QBDay or something? Or do you mean that PAPO don't have SI Champs in 2017?

Show Profile  mcroxford Posted: 21 October 2015, 9:05 PM  
ONZ long term calendar on website shows PAPO for schools trial but then states not QB weekend. NOC has SI champs 2017 after passing on holding nationals and area champs in same year.

Show Profile  mcroxford Posted: 21 October 2015, 9:14 PM  
On the long term calendar rather than the 2015-17 Competition calendar updated today.

Show Profile  Rolf Posted: 15 November 2015, 8:23 AM  
Back to this...
So in summary.
200 for regional champs is the norm.
HBOC are generous hosts.

I suspect that price is not a particularly influential factor on attendance. The Timing of the event and the inclusion of school trials etc seem to have more influence on attendance.

Thanks for the responses

Show Profile  MikeB Posted: 16 November 2015, 8:40 AM  
Just to get things straight. The fact the numbers are big at QBDay now, is not so much that it's a schools trial but more about it being the Regional Schools Challenge. The trials have piggy backed onto the event as of this year. The Challenge has been running for at least 7/8 years now and this always brought over 100 juniors to the eventand I agree with Jeff that it's the right time to have them.

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